Konbini Konspiracy

I love a good conspiracy theory and I now have one of my own. I think 7-Eleven are onto me.

I think the top dogs have either read my column and are P.O. (annoyed for those younger readers) because I’ve been bagging them recently or they’ve decided to simply mess with my head. Whichever one it is, it’s working. I’m not happy.

Sure, the Missing Anpan [あんパン] returned, but by that time I’d stopped missing the 7-Eleven version of the sweet red bean paste bun and developed a taste and surprising fondness for the Yamazaki brand which includes mashed-up chestnut chunks as well. Somehow the chestnuts cut down on the extreme sweetness of the paste which in the new version from 7-Eleven is over the top in my opinion.

Anyway, the other night I went down to my local 7-Eleven only to find…

Yes, people. Yes. The Yamazaki brand was now gone.

I thought surely this is a one-off, it will be in another 7-Eleven but my gut knew differently. I could feel that sinking, gnawing feeling when deep down I know I’m right, even though I want desperately to be wrong.

I walked to the next konbini [コンビニ] along the road.


I traipsed to the next.


By then I’d walked so far that I was near Fresta Supermarket on Nakahiro-dori so I walked in, found what I wanted straight away and walked out.

The next day I tried again but my search was in vain.

The other night it reappeared. Just in time, funnily enough, to write this column.


I think not. I don’t believe in coincidences.

I have a theory of my own. I suspect that no one else likes the new 7-Eleven anpan either and now everyone has swapped to the Yamazaki one. I can’t say I blame them really.

Things have been a little slow with autumn products appearing, but I’m very excited to say that Suntory has released a new double apple flavour chuuhai [チューハイ] which is always a good thing. It’s yummy, trust me. Or don’t and try it out for yourself.

Double apple chuhai

It’s not too sweet which makes a nice change from the ones they usually release around this time of year. Plus it’s 9% which means it will make you “happier” than the 4 or 5% ones that have been a hit over summer.

Family Mart always has some lovely frappe flavours available and from September 3 they have released a new gelato flavour. A friend of mine tried it and when I asked for her expert opinion on all things milky (I can eat ice cream and cheese for some reason, but milk makes me sick), she described it as, “So-so.” Actually, she said it in Japanese, but she could have said it in any language and you would get her drift. She said it tasted more like yoghurt than gelato. She was a tad disappointed.

I’m a very visual person and I am really loving the new autumn packaging of some of the green tea brands. I picked up this bottle for a picnic in the park with my best friend last weekend and had to take a photo to show you all.

Family Mart has also released two new bakery products for autumn: a custard cream, sweet potato danish and a very yummy chestnut pie.

Chestnut 'maron' pie
Japanese chestnut pie [Maron-wami-yutaka-namaron-pai]

Sweet potato custard cream danish

I’m really impressed with Family Mart lately; they may be the second most popular konbini, but they are really trying hard to be Number One. Maybe it’s just because I’m annoyed with 7-Eleven at the moment… but I can’t say I’m able to give you an unbiased opinion. 7-Eleven really needs to pull out the big guns to get back in my good books.

I told you last year that Family Mart was my new boyfriend and although we broke up, I must say there’s always a chance if he’s putting in this much effort.

7-Eleven, are you going to try and win my heart again?

Tune in next week to find out!

Jade Brischke

Jade first visited Hiroshima with a group of her students from Australia and after falling in love with the city, vowed that one day she would return to live and work. It seems dreams really do come true! When she's not writing she's out and about with her camera, walking and exploring the streets or some may say, wandering aimlessly. She, however, doesn't believe any wandering is aimless. Jade blogs regularly at jackcrispy.com.